Aurelia Metals Ltd (ASX:AMI) Managing Director & CEO, Jim Simpson, discusses the Hera-Nymagee Project, production, and exploration activity.
Aurelia Metals is an Australian listed company, code AMI. It’s got approximately a market cap of $50 million. It has an operation near Cobar at Nymagee, which is called Hera and a nearby mine called Nymagee Copper. These two mines make up the company and we’re currently mining at the Hera ore body.
Our financial highlights for FY16 were that we made a maiden profit of $10.9 million, and an EBITDA of $40 million. Our production highlights were that we’re able to increase our recovery from 62 per cent, up to 87 per cent. And we’re also able to increase our throughput to plus 380,000 tonnes per annum.
The Hera metal production, financial year 2016, was 47,000 ounces of gold, approximately 7,600 tonnes of led and 7,200 tonnes of zinc. We also produced around about 43,000 ounces of silver.
The process plant has been our key focus and we’ve been focusing on throughput, increasing our throughput from 48 tonnes an hour to 52. That equates to around about where we were at feasibility study, or what we were trying to achieve at 350,000 tonnes per annum, now pushing towards 380,000 tonnes per annum. The gravity circuit is performing very well and we’re focusing on improving our gold recoveries, from 88 per cent to over 90 per cent.
The key thing with exploration is that we are doing a lot of infill drilling, converting our inferred resources to measured and indicated resources, which then can be converted to ore reserves. And we’re also embarking on North Pod exploration, getting some very positive results out of that. And hopefully testing the ‘Beyond’ target, which is further, a repeatable ore body beyond the North Pod.
Currently we have approximately $28 million cash in the bank and that’s come up from about $1.3 million, over 12 months ago, in financial year 15. So we’ve come a long way in that respect and that’s certainly put us in a more comfortable position. And with Glencore (LON:GLEN) our whole aim is to pay back the $125 million debt, which we have an interest free payment, or interest free component of two years. So we need to make as much cash as possible within that two-year period.
In 12 months the most important thing is that we actually have restructured, or in a position where we can restructure our debt. Currently there’s $125 million owed to Glencore. We want to be in a position where we’ve got some good exploration results, so that we can actually expand the life of mine. And we want to put at least four or five good quarters together, so that we’ve got confidence with the retail and institutional investors. So that improves our share price long-term.